Queens Lawmakers on the Move Nov. 25, 2020

Queens County City Council News

Rosenthal Takes Part in Mask Grab and Go 

Assembly Member Daniel Rosenthal

State Assemblymember Daniel Rosenthal (D-Kew Gardens Hills, Kew Gardens, Pomonok, Electchester, College Point and parts of Whitestone, Richmond Hill, Briarwood and Forest Hills) teamed up with local officials and the MTA Mask Force to promote safe and responsible ridership during COVID-19 last week. 

On Tuesday, Rosenthal and State Senator John Liu (D-Northeast Queens) distributed thousands of face masks at a “Grab & Go” event located at bus stops near College Point Boulevard and 20th Avenue.

On Thursday, Rosenthal partnered with State Assemblymember Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills, Rego Park, Ridgewood, Richmond Hill, Middle Village, Glendale, and Kew Gardens). Together, they distributed face masks in front of the Ridgewood Savings Bank located in Forest Hills. The nearby metrohub which services nine separate lines is a central point of access for many of the electeds’ constituents.

As New York’s COVID-19 cases are once again on the rise, Rosenthal urged constituents to continue taking safety precautions such as wearing masks and social distancing. Rosenthal, Hevesi and Liu passed out face masks to residents as well as informational material to promote the safety of all New Yorkers.

“Moving into the holiday season we cannot forget the threat that COVID-19 still poses. We must work together to protect each other. I urge New Yorkers to continue wearing masks and social distancing,” said Rosenthal. “I am proud to continue to supply my constituents with the PPE items needed to ensure the health and safety of our city.”

The face masks at these events were provided by the MTA.

Miller Advances Bills to Protect Workers Before Second Wave of COVID-19

Councilmember I. Daneek Miller

City Councilmember I. Daneek Miller (D-Cambria Heights, Hollis, Jamaica, St. Albans, Queens Village, and Springfield Gardens) chaired the Council’s Committee on Civil Service and Labor on Friday and heard legislation related to worker health and safety.

Miller introduced two pieces of legislation: Introductions 2161 and 2162. Intro 2161 would establish a board to review workplace health and safety guidance for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensure that proper guidance is given to both municipal and private employees. Introduction 2162 would amend the Administrative Code of the City of New York and create new guidelines regarding disseminating occupational safety and health information to City employees during public health emergencies. The legislation would create an emergency bulletin with up-to-date health and safety guidance to be distributed by the Citywide Office of Occupational Safety and Health, under the purview of DCAS.

The legislation’s necessity stems from multiple reports of inaccurate and, in some cases, dangerous guidance from city agencies. In the most egregious cases, transit workers were instructed not to wear masks, and many contracted the virus, and others died as a result.

“Tragically, this pandemic has shown us how ill-prepared our City agencies were to be able to provide clear, uniform guidance to the City’s workforce during a public health emergency. As the potential for a dangerous second wave grows, we are committed to saving lives in real-time and are working to ensure that the dedicated men and women who make our lives so seamless are given the proper information and resources they deserve,” said Miller.

A recording of the virtual hearing is available on the City Council website.

Ocasio-Cortez Donates Turkeys to Constituents

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-Astoria, College Point, Corona, East Elmhurst, Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Woodside, parts of the Bronx) campaign for Congress distributed turkeys to 200 families in the Congresswoman’s district ahead of Thanksgiving. 

In Queens, the campaign worked with Our Lady of Sorrows, Eternal Love Baptist Church, P.S. 110Q, and 89th Street Tenant Unidos Association to deliver turkeys to families.

Gianaris Joins Leader Stewart-Cousins in Announcing New Senate Supermajority

Senator Michael Gianaris

Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria, Long Island City, Sunnyside, parts of Woodside, Maspeth, Ridgewood, Woodhaven) joined Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-White Plains, New Rochelle, and Yonkers) on Tuesday to announce they will have enough Democratic members to hold a two thirds supermajority. 

This will mean the Senate Democratic Majority will be the largest majority conference in the history of the state Senate.

“Under Democratic leadership, we have secured the largest Senate majority in state history due to our unprecedented record of fighting for our fellow New Yorkers. Among the historic changes our majority already achieved are election reforms, combating climate change, tenant protections, fixing the unfairness in our criminal laws, and protecting the civil rights of women, immigrants and our LGBTQ neighbors. With our communities facing extraordinary hardship during the current pandemic, there is much that remains to be done. I can’t wait to get to work and see how much more our new supermajority can do now!” Gianaris said.

For photos of the press conference, click here.

For video of Senator Gianaris’ remarks, click here.

Sanders Lauds Historic NY Senate Democratic Supermajority

State Sen. James Sanders Jr.

State Senator James Sanders Jr. (D–Laurelton, Rosedale, Springfield Gardens, Edgemere, Bayswater, Arverne and Far Rockaway) released a statement about the New York State Democrats achieving a supermajority in the state Senate.

“I am overjoyed that the New York State Senate Democratic Conference has achieved a historic veto-proof Supermajority. This will strengthen my ability to fight for the people of Southeast Queens and I am excited about the prospects ahead. I am looking forward to working with my colleagues to enact transformative legislation that will improve life for all New Yorkers. This includes passing my priority bills that will provide much needed economic relief to the people.  From calling on millionaires to pay their fair share of taxes to creating a public bank that will provide our community with significant economic growth, this new Supermajority means real change for the people of this great state. I would like to thank Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris for their leadership.”